Aeoniums are one of the most ornamental of all the succulents. Even those that don’t appreciate succulents seem to like these plants. Perhaps it is the fact they look like large, colourful, rubbery flowers that these popular plants have such an appeal. And luckily many are easy plants to grow as well.
Most Aeoniums come originally from the Canary Islands off the coast of Spain in the Atlantic Ocean, with a few odd species from several isolated parts of central Africa. The climate of the Canary Islands is fairly Mediterranean so these plants are perfectly adapted to many similar climates in Australia.
Most Aeoniums are winter growers looking their best when temps are moderate and water plentiful. As summer approaches many will curl their leaves in and go into a form of dormancy, though in cultivation, given some shade and water, most will continue to grow actively.
Most Aeoniums are monocarpic, meaning they die after flowering. For unbranching species this means the death of the entire plant and offspring is only created by germination of the seeds.
Aeoniums are ideal pot plants needing very little other than soil for support and water. If growing Aeoniums along the coast, the humidity and rain will often mean they never need to be watered. But in dry climates they will probably need to be watered frequently or put on drip irrigation.
Soil type is not a big issue with potted plants, but generally Aeoniums perform better in standard potting soils rather than super well draining and nutrient deficient cactus soils. Remember these plants do not like to dry out. Re-potting is good for the health of the plant, but should be done ideally after the hot weather is over, near the start of the main growing season.
Compared to many other Crassulaceae succulents, these plants are almost problem free. They make great displays inside and out.
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